The American Bureau of Shipping has reported record performance in 2012 despite uncertainties in the global economy and the shipping and offshore markets, ABS Chairman, Robert D. Somerville announced Tuesday at the classification society’s annual meeting in New York.
In 2012, the ABS-classed fleet reached 193.5 million gross tons, a growth rate of more than 4 percent compared to 2011. ABS also maintained a 21 percent share in the global orderbook designated for ABS class.
“ABS closed 2012 firmly entrenched as the second largest society in terms of gross tons in class and as the largest society in terms of new tonnage on order,” said ABS President and CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki. “Development and delivery of technically advanced products and superior service are the essential components of ABS’ position of leadership.”
ABS noted continued success in several key sectors of the marine industry. Market share for new construction containerships continued to grow year-on-year, ending 2012 with 26 percent of the orderbook, including 29 ultra large containerships. ABS also continued its strong presence in the LNG carrier sector with 22 percent of existing tonnage and 35 percent of tonnage on order. In the bulk carrier market, ABS grew its overall tonnage by 11 percent and has nearly nine million gross tons on order.
“Looking forward, we will continue to develop innovative products and services that help our members and the industry in these challenging markets improve efficiencies, increase production and minimize downtime,” said Wiernicki. “As the Class of the Future, our efforts will become increasingly risk-based, technologically driven, holistically framed and integrated across the entire life cycle of vessels and offshore assets.”
In the offshore market, ABS says it began 2012 with a strong position and continued to lead in the mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) and floating production unit sectors. The jackup market, where ABS continues to have the majority share, remained robust with 13 ABS-classed jackups delivered in the course of the year and 60 new orders.
Throughout 2012, the growth in the offshore market centered on orders for new drillships. There were 31 new orders in 2012, with 23 awarded to ABS, including a large number of units earmarked for presalt drilling programs offshore Brazil. ABS ended 2012 with 51 drillships on the orderbook, equating to 68 percent of the new construction market.
ABS also continued to thrive in the floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel market, closing out 2012 with 43 percent of the existing FPSOs and 35 percent of newbuilds.
In the area of Port State Control, ABS maintained its position as a top performer with the United States Coast Guard and Paris and Tokyo MOUs in their annual reports on class-related detentions.